What we're reading: The phylogenomics of peanut allergens, saving the world with (and from) evolution, and how to make better figures

reading - lectura
In the journals
Ratnaparkhe MB, T-H Lee, X Tan, X Wang, J Li, C Kim, LK Rainville, C Lemke, RO Compton, J Robertson, M Gallo, DJ Bertioli, and AH Paterson. 2014. Comparative and evolutionary analysis of major peanut allergen gene families. Genome Biology and Evolution. doi: 10.1093/gbe/evu189.

The peanut allergen genes are interspersed with low-copy genes and transposable elements. Phylogenetic analyses revealed lineage-specific expansion and loss of low-copy genes between species and homoeologs.

Carroll SP, P Søgaard Jørgensen, MT Kinnison, CT Bergstrom, RF Denison, P Gluckman, TB Smith, SY Strauss, and BE Tabashnik. 2014. Applying evolutionary biology to address global challenges. Science. doi: 10.1126/science.1245993.

Two categories of evolutionary challenges result from escalating human impacts on the planet. The first arises from cancers, pathogens and pests that evolve too quickly, and the second from the inability of many valued species to adapt quickly enough.

Rougier NP, M Droettboom, PE Bourne. 2014. Ten simple rules for better figures. PLoS Computational Biology. 10(9): e1003833. doi: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1003833.

A more accurate definition for scientific visualization would be a graphical interface between people and data. In this short article, we do not pretend to explain everything about this interface … Instead we aim to provide a basic set of rules to improve figure design and to explain some of the common pitfalls.

In the news
“Instead of processing your items in a normal a loop, we’ll show you how to process all your items in parallel, spreading the work across multiple cores.”
“As of last week, I have officially survived my first year as a tenure-track assistant professor!”
“There are no national statistics about how many people are giving up on academic science, but an NPR analysis of NIH data found that 3,400 scientists lost their sustaining grants between 2012 and 2013.”

About Jeremy Yoder

Jeremy B. Yoder is an Assistant Professor of Biology at California State University Northridge, studying the evolution and coevolution of interacting species, especially mutualists. He is a collaborator with the Joshua Tree Genome Project and the Queer in STEM study of LGBTQ experiences in scientific careers. He has written for the website of Scientific American, the LA Review of Books, the Chronicle of Higher Education, The Awl, and Slate.
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